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Edwige Dazogbo

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Edwige Dazogbo: A Journey from Cinematographic Dreams to Media Leadership

Edwige Dazogbo’s love for storytelling blossomed in the enchanting world of French literature during her high school years. She was born in Benin, West Africa, and grew up traveling to many countries with her family because her dad was a United Nations diplomat. This exposure allowed Edwige to experience a rich tapestry of cultures from a young age.

At 17, driven by a filmmaker’s dream, Edwige left France’s warmth for Montreal’s chilly winters. There, she delved into cinematographic studies at university, her favorite class being American Film History.

A year into film studies, Edwige faced a crucial decision. The school orientation coordinator saw her potential and suggested switching to communications and public relations. Though her heart yearned for a private UK film school, Edwige wasn’t quite ready to live abroad alone. So, she stayed in Montreal, spending three enriching years at the University of Montreal. Initially, she honed her journalism skills but soon realized the importance of finance in her career.

Edwige craved practical experience. This led her and friends to create a short film, “Colors,” a project born from her desire for action over theory. Her father and teachers had always nurtured her creativity, a foresight she appreciated during her professional journey. Despite initial camera focus, she discovered a talent for media management, opening doors to media and television opportunities.

At 20, Edwige landed her first job in cinema and communications at a film festival. This four-year experience deepened her understanding of African film representation in media. Her academic journey continued with leadership and management courses which became her favorites at HEC and she graduated from there.

Edwige, a lifelong learner, now sets her sights on a Doctorate in Business Administration in the USA, aligning with her career goals. Through experiences and studies, Edwige transformed from a passionate filmmaker into a media leader, her love for storytelling and leadership forever guiding her.

Championing Diversity and Inclusion in the Business World

Edwige, a Black entrepreneur, proudly celebrates her Beninese heritage. She stands out in her community but also identifies as an Afro-Canadian, a professional Black woman, and a human being making waves in the corporate world. Her journey is one of paving the way for future immigrants, ensuring accessibility to the paths she forged. Edwige believes her contribution to the business world lies in championing inclusivity and diversity.

Edwige applauds the growing visibility of successful people of color in leadership roles. However, she recognizes a lack of diverse representation in media. This gap fueled her creation of Edgy TV. The channel aims to reflect society’s diversity, promote equity, and build a more inclusive world for future generations.

Edwige firmly believes that possibilities are endless, regardless of race, ethnicity, or immigration status. Opportunities are plentiful for those willing to create and drive change. She sees Black business leaders as more than contributors; they are catalysts for a more inclusive business environment, inspiring others to achieve new heights.

From Modest Beginnings to a Media Powerhouse

Passion, not ambition, fueled Edgy TV’s start. Inspired by artists’ needs, Edwige launched a simple 60-page magazine. Her vision and dedication transformed that modest publication into a media powerhouse: five TV stations, two radio channels, and ten magazines. Edgy TV even has plans to enter the hospitality industry.

Edwige’s achievements garnered recognition. As a young entrepreneur, she was nominated in the ARISTA BMO Contest. She has been recognized among the TOP 50 Women in Media and nominated in Global CEO Monthly. Edgy TV’s global reach is evident: a three-year partnership with Reuters TV featuring their news on the Edgy TV website. Last year, Edgy TV surpassed 10 million total views on a UK platform during the pandemic, showcasing its growing influence. Securing federal licenses and broadcasting her TV show on provincial television were significant milestones for Edwige.

Edgy TV, along with its sister channels MAMA BENZ TV which aims to empower african women, and EDGY URBAN, offers a refreshing content mix. The programming is eclectic: novellas, romantic dramas, Indian movies, and a series on passionate New York restaurateurs. It also features African traditional films, Asian independent features and shorts, and unique Nollywood and Bollywood productions – cultural and original ethnic movies rarely seen elsewhere. In addition, Edgy TV brings stories of kings, women, and love from Nollywood, Africa’s largest film industry based in Nigeria.

Furthermore, viewers can enjoy “Kirly-Sue’s Kitchen,” offering easy recipes for vegans, vegetarians, and meat lovers, perfect for busy cooks. The Squirrel Rosenberg Podcast provides educational, entertaining, and encouraging content. Other shows include “Ecowas Wife,” “Dice Game,” and independent urban music videos, rounding out the diverse programming.

A Day in the Life of a Multifaceted Business Leader

Edwige begins her day grounded with meditation and her routine, then employees greet her in the mornings often bringing exciting news from different time zones, energizing her for the day ahead.

Edwige juggles multiple projects as a business leader. Corporate and financial responsibilities dominate her mornings, setting the foundation for the day. Team and production meetings follow. Afternoons are for marketing, sales, and business development discussions. Communication is crucial for Edwige. She uses messaging apps to interact with her team, offering feedback, support, and approvals on various projects, from articles and video interviews to graphic designs.

Building an international network is one of Edwige’s most rewarding experiences. She connects with experts, professionals, executives, personalities, and influencers. Her accomplishment isn’t just assembling a diverse group; it’s fostering a collaborative spirit where everyone helps each other.

Moreover, Edwige finds true joy in sparking others’ passion for multiculturalism, media, and fashion. Her greatest reward is the success and growth of her media ventures, fueled by the love and support of her community.

Building an Empire: Edwige’s Journey to Media Success

Edwige’s path to media success wasn’t easy. Securing funding and finding the right partners were her biggest hurdles. However, her passion and vision were key to securing funding. She convinced investors and partners to believe in her dream. Transitioning to digital platforms further reduced costs and expanded reach, streamlining printing and content distribution.

Edwige’s adaptability to changing times and technology was crucial. She built a strong network of partners and supporters who shared her commitment to media inclusivity and diversity. Through determination, strategic planning, and firm belief, Edwige transformed a small magazine into a multifaceted media empire.

Nurturing Spirituality, Creativity, and Connections

Edwige believes faith and love are the roots of a perfect work-life balance. She balances her demanding career with activities that nurture her well-being. Daily meditation fosters her spiritual life, grounding her for the busy schedule ahead.

The peace of having faith and love around you is essential,” she says. Family and friends are crucial. Edwige prioritizes time with loved ones and travels abroad to see family whenever possible. These connections keep her grounded.

Edwige enjoys drawing and watching Afro-beats and Gospel music videos and TV series in her free time. These hobbies entertain and inspire her creatively. She loves music and often shares ideas with friends over meals, whether dining out or enjoying a home-cooked one. This social interaction provides a vital break from work.

Edwige also enjoys online shopping, finding simple pleasures in consumerism. Her balanced life includes healthy eating and indulging in her favorite gadgets, prioritizing both physical and mental well-being.

Empowering Minority Leaders: Embracing Authenticity and Resilience

Edwige has a powerful message for young minority leaders: “When you talk to the corporate world, always be yourself during business conversations.” Authenticity builds genuine connections and lasting impact, she believes.

Edwige stresses perseverance and following your dreams. “Never give up on your dreams and dare to listen to your heart and passion to keep going.” Her own journey, overcoming obstacles to build a media empire, exemplifies this.

For young leaders, especially minorities, Edwige’s message is clear: “Believe in yourself and your vision.” Leverage your unique perspectives and experiences – powerful assets in the corporate world, she says. By staying true to who you are and pursuing your passions, you pave the way for future generations.

Edwige’s advice emphasizes resilience and self-belief. “Great things will surely eventually happen,” she assures. Success is a journey built on dedication and unwavering commitment to your goals.

Unwavering Passion and Perseverance

Ideas, talent, and project creation ignite Edwige’s unwavering passion. They fuel her determination and perseverance. The creative process and seeing projects come to life inspire her, pushing her forward even in challenging times.

Edwige embodies the immigrant Afro-woman’s dream. She’s determined to make a global impact. This belief in defying odds motivates her to constantly push boundaries and break barriers. Every accomplishment reinforces Edwige’s conviction: anything is possible with dedication, hard work, and her ever-present passion.

Quotes

“Be yourself when you talk to the corporate world who want to have a business conversation with you.”

“Never ever give up on your dreams and dare to listen to your heart and passion to keep going, great things will surely eventually happen.”

Also Read: The 10 Most Inspiring Black Corporate Leaders to Follow in 2024

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